At a press conference yesterday, Azzurri coach Antonio Conte dropped some staggering statistics regarding the low number of Italians playing in the Serie A: "My worry ahead of qualifying for the 2022 World Cup is how much things have changed since 2006, when Marcello Lippi won the World Cup," said Conte. "Back then an Italy Coach had the possibility of choosing around 61-62 Italians from every 100 players. Today that choice has dropped to 33 Italians out of 100. "This is a real problem and the biggest danger facing Italy today. It will be difficult for Italy to be competitive if we can only pick 33 per cent of the available players. Those figures mean there is a problem and we have to invert the trend." It's a far cry from when I first started following Italian soccer and all teams were limited to having only three foreign players on the field at one time (it was that way for all European teams). I knew England was in poor shape in this department, but I didn't think Italy was so bad off. However, I see they're now practically in the same boat.